Key Points

This article is based on the findings of an evaluation of The Wallace Foundation’s Strengthening Financial Management initiative, which show that it is possible, with well-designed training and support, to enhance the ability of nonprofit leaders to strategically manage their resources for long-term sustainability and programmatic quality.

The initiative tested two models of capacity building – a relatively high-intensity approach and a lighter, though still substantive, model. While the two shared a common core of content, the amount of resources provided in each of the two models was dramatically different.

In addition to the two main findings – that building nonprofit financial-management capacity is possible and that the gains arising from the more limited model were comparable to those seen in the higher-intensity approach – the study uncovered some key success factors with clear implications not only for potential replications of this type of project, but for cohort-based, nonprofit capacity-building efforts more broadly.

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Open Access Sponsor

Support for this open access article is provided by The Wallace Foundation.